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A while back, I shared our Workroom reveal here, but we still have a few minor things to take care of… one of which is we need something to sit on at the work table.  I’ve been checking out industrial stools at Kirkland’s, Crate & Barrel, and Restoration Hardware, but our current plan is to work with what we have for now.

Enter this sexy little number I picked up at a garage sale a few years ago.

Originally, it was one of the first pieces I did when I was still learning a lot about upholstering furniture.  I decked it out with black, pinstripe duck cloth and trimmed it with tassels. Fancy, right?

Wow… I was so proud.

Anyhoo, I’ve been reading a lot about Chalk Paint and we’ve been considering the technique for a large project.  So I thought it was time to bring out my garage sale guinea pig and give it an update.

I picked up a can of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in Graphite and Clear Wax to seal it.

The only place that sells Annie Sloan Paint in the Portland area is The Purple Pear in Northwest.  The shop is owned by Phyllis deVries and if you’re in the area, I highly recommend dropping in.  She has several finished pieces in her showroom that are done with Chalk Paint and they all are equally gorgeous.

A couple of things I learned on this project:

No priming required: Other than a little light sanding on the under side of the seat after removing the upholstery staples… there really was zero prep.  Cutting out a step and getting to the fun part makes me a happy girl.

The paint is VERY forgiving:  The paint texture is a little different from regular paint. It’s creamy and glides on.  Normally I would’ve spray painted a piece like this.  And as I was brushing on the Chalk Paint and could see all the brush strokes, I was starting to wish I had sprayed it.  But I had read that this is common, so I kept going.  By the time I finished, I could see where the paint was drying and creating a beautiful matte (streak free) finish.

Graphite means graphite: Annie Sloan Paint comes in 24 colors.  We are considering a black finish for a new book shelf in the studio so I chose Graphite since it’s the closest they offer to black.  When I opened the can I was greeted with a dark gray paint… like, um… GRAPHITE!

It’s a great color, but not quite as dark as I’d hoped.  I spoke to Phyllis who explained Annie Sloan does not offer a true black paint as a part of the line.  I probably should have researched that further before I got started, but this is EXACTLY why I was testing out this process before using it on a larger project.

At this point, I seriously considered repainting the stool with a true black paint. However, the room has a small amount of gray in it, so I think it’ll work in the space.

Waxing is kinda weird: I’ve never waxed furniture before and I wasn’t sure what to expect.

I had a special helper for “Take Your Child to Work Day” and we took turns brushing on the wax.  We both started wondering what we were doing.  It doesn’t apply like a traditional sealant.  It has a lard like quality to it which we weren’t anticipating.

Luckily, it buffed off nicely and our new seat is complete.

Final Thoughts: One of my favorite things about the pieces I’ve seen done with the Annie Sloan paint is the “antique” look you can get when you use a darker wax.  I actually didn’t realize this until I used the clear wax and I ended up with a clear (duh!) finish.  It’s my understanding that you can tint the clear wax and I’m still considering doing that.

Over all, I definitely want to play more with Chalk Paint.  There has been a bit of a learning curve for me on what I like and how I want to use it.  I can see having a lot of fun with this technique given the right project.

The “new” stool is a good stand in in the Workroom:

Okay… so the stool doesn’t go ON the table, but I wanted you to see it next to some of the other gray elements.  Plus we have this going on:

Having to set-up a temporary desk in an already completed space makes me a little sad. But the new bookshelf and standing work station is being built as I type.  I can’t wait to show you the finished project soon.

PS. Mama likes her freebies, but please know that I was in no way compensated for this review.  All supplies were purchased with Tyson’s cold hard cash.  Thanks, baby!